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SWOT Analysis: Archives!

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by

Robin Dennis

on 5 November 2013

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Transcript of SWOT Analysis: Archives!

SWOT Analysis: Archives!
Opportunities
York University branch of Ontario Archives remodeling allowed for more materials to be stored:
130,000 maps
200,000 architectural records
1.7 million photographs, genealogical records and vital statistics
revamp includes a more sophisticated electrical system; this ensures tighter control of temperature and humidity levels
enhanced security ensures that the unique and valuable materials are kept safe and continually available for patron use
Threats
major threats to archives are environmental factors:
dust, light, mould etc.
the temperature is very strictly regulated and should be kept between 10 and 15 degrees Celsius, this is the optimal temperature to stop the material from disintegrating
insects are also a threat as they are usually undetected until the damage has been done
insects are sneaky, they can enter through gaps in the doors and windows, or even hitch a ride in on materials as they enter the archives
Weaknesses
like all types of libraries, a weakness of archives is lack of funding, and budgets being cut
reduced budgets affect all areas of service (admin, public and technical); hours are reduced, properly trained staff is cut, this means that it takes longer to get material processed and available to the public
another weakness archives face is copyright, and archivists ability to understand it correctly
the mandate is to ensure that items in an archive is available to the public, so if there are not enough qualified archivists that know copyright law...
Users may not find what they are looking for, like a needle in a haystack
and lastly, there is always the human element....
Strengths
there is a wide variety of information:
letters, manuscripts, diaries, photographs, birth, death and marriage records, architectural plans... the list goes on
public has access to primary resources and original records
published AND unpublished materials (like personal letters and diaries)
archives are beneficial to nearly everyone
genealogists, students, first nations, property-owners, environmental engineers, etc.
the materials are unique
Edward P. Taylor Library & Archive at the Art Gallery of Ontario
Trent Valley Archives
Sault Ste. Marie Public Library Archive
Canadian National Exhibition Archives

Our Archives of Choice
"Angels & Demons", Columbia Pictures 2009
Full transcript